Economist: Currency Reform is Long Overdue in Cuba
HAVANA – Ending Cuba’s dual-currency system, one of the most complicated
reforms proposed by the government of Raul Castro, should have been done
long ago, according to an economist cited in Monday’s edition of
Communist Party daily Granma.
Joaquin Infante Ugarte, an adviser to the president of the National
Association of Cuban Economists and Accountants, called the elimination
of the dual-currency regime an “overriding necessity.”
The Cuban government in October 2013 announced the beginning of a
gradual process to unify the two currencies that have circulated on the
island for 20 years: the peso, worth less than 4 cents and the
convertible peso (CUC), which trades at parity with the dollar.
The vast majority of Cubans are paid in pesos, receiving an average
monthly salary equivalent to about $17.
“The most strategic thing,” according to Infante, is to eliminate the
dual exchange rates in the state sector.
He warned that the elimination of the double-currency system will not
mean an immediate increase in individual purchasing power because the
appreciation of the Cuban peso is linked to an “increase in
productivity, in labor efficiency, in competitiveness and profitability.”
Source: Latin American Herald Tribune – Economist: Currency Reform is
Long Overdue in Cuba –